A bi-partisan group of Kentucky lawmakers wants to give a sales tax rebate to those trying to rebuild from the March 2 tornadoes. The emergency legislation, announced Tuesday, is an attempt to “kick start reconstruction” in 21 storm damaged counties according to Rep. John Will Stacy, D-West Liberty.
Stacy is from the hardest hit community, where much of downtown was destroyed. He admits he is concerned about people returning. “There is so much devastation there that people may choose to relocate and leave a community with a big hole,” said Stacy.
The emergency bill, which lawmakers hope to move through the House by Thursday so it can be considered by the Senate, would allow for rebates for up to three years on materials used to rebuild or replace a structure in the county where it was damaged or destroyed by the storm. The Department of Revenue would monitor the emergency refunds.
"It's going to be a year, maybe more, before these economies get back in places and some of those businesses are going to have a hard time just establishing themselves on rebuilding and getting their clientele back,” said Senator Robert Stivers, R-Manchester.
The bill would also authorize the Education Commissioner to declare ten days of missed school in the storm counties as emergency disaster days. That means those days would not count in Average Daily Attendance figures, the formula used by the state to determine annual funding for each school district.